By Laura Almaraz
There’s Army Strong. Then, there’s Baby Strong – a program that assists families with child necessities offered by Army Community Service at White Sands Missile Range.
Baby Strong is supplied by community donations and provides parents with children’s clothes and other necessities using a pay-it-forward method.
“Baby Strong is one-of-a-kind. It is the only one in the Army and it’s the best practice,” said Andrew Lucht, the Installation Army Emergency Relief Officer.
According to Lucht, over twenty families used the program last quarter.
The Baby Strong room is filled with three racks full of new and gently used clothes for boys and girls in sizes ranging from newborn to four years old.
Families can have continuous support through the pay-it-forward program as their children grow. Parents can choose the clothing items their child needs and once the child grows out of that size, they return the clothes to Baby Strong and get the next size up.
During their first visit to Baby Strong, parents can get two packages of diapers, two packages of baby wipes, hygiene products, and a baby blanket, as available. They may also pick a larger item, such as a stroller, playpen, or rocker to be returned once the child no longer needs it. Shoes, board games, and books are also available.
Families can register for Baby Strong with ACS. The program is geared towards helping military members primarily E1 to E4 with young children, but other WSMR community members can also receive help.
In addition to Baby Strong, ACS regularly offers a lending closet for families who have not received all their belongings on post. Families can borrow basic household items like dishes, flatware, and toasters for thirty days.
For more information, please visit ACS at Building 250 or call 678-6767.